May 29, 2014 Contact: Jennifer Fuson 202-370-8128 jfuson [at] bradymail [dot] org
Washington, D.C. – The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, today, strongly supported new public health and suicide prevention strategies recently introduced as part of a broader gun violence reduction bill in Massachusetts. A product of the Massachusetts’ Gun Violence Task Force and introduced by House Speaker Robert DeLeo (D-Winthrop), the legislation includes new measures such as school-based suicide prevention and awareness training, and suicide prevention manuals and training for physicians. This focus on public health and safety reflects a newfound appreciation and consensus around the need for laws surrounding gun violence to deal with suicide prevention and guns in the home.
“Massachusetts is taking a bold approach to reduce gun violence by incorporating strong gun policies and suicide prevention strategies to make the greatest impact to reduce gun deaths and injuries. It is through measures of this kind that will bring the message of gun violence prevention where it is needed most: to children and adults in gun–owning households that are far more likely than others to be killed or injured by gun-related violence,” explained Brian Malte, senior national policy director at the Brady Campaign. “Several of the strategies outlined are those that we have been stressing for years: suicide-proof your home; speak up when you feel that others may be planning on doing something violent; and ASK whether or not there is a gun where your child plays. These steps, along with strong gun reform policies that include extending background checks to all gun sales, will make a real difference in reducing all gun-related violence.”
“Public health education campaigns are critical to inspire individuals to make safer choices around gun ownership and access. There are currently 300 million guns across America, the majority owned by law-abiding citizens. Yet, it is these guns that result in the majority of gun deaths and injuries every year. We must address how we think about the guns in our communities and our homes, and this Massachusetts bill is a big step,” concluded Malte.
The mission of the Brady organization is to create a safer America for all of us that will lead to a dramatic reduction in gun deaths and injuries. For more insight on gun violence prevention, follow our Facebook Page and Twitter Account.